|Anna on her first day as a volunteer|
circa Fall 1993
Yes, braces, bangs and all.
The Cappon House is the historic home of Holland, Michigan's first mayor, Isaac Cappon, his first and second wives, and their sixteen children (when I was twelve I loved the bit about the children; today I still do, though for slightly different reasons -- lessons in birth control anyone??). Over the next few years I gave countless tours to senior citizens groups, schoolchildren, and tourists, eventually expanding my responsibilities to include duties at the Holland Museum as well. By my mid teens I was torn between the childhood desire to become a bookshop owner and novelist or my newfound passion for the field of museum studies and history.
Luckily, I've found a way to combine these vocational yearnings of mine: reference librarianship in the world of rare books and manuscript collections. Most of you are aware that since shortly after moving to Boston in August of 2007 I have worked as part of the Library Reader Services Staff of the Massachusetts Historical Society, an independent research library and (our docents like to inform our visitors) the oldest historical society in the Western Hemisphere, founded in 1791.
For the past three years I've worked part-time as a Library Assistant, though my pre-professional status has hardly kept my colleagues from embracing me as part of the team.They've been a wonderful group of folks to work with and have contributed to my education as a library student and historian as much as, if not more than, my formal studies.
As of January 1st, the departure of one of those colleagues for a new position at LibraryThing.com is leaving a full-time Assistant Reference Librarian position open which I have been invited to fill. I'm excited to be taking on new responsibilities as well as (hopefully) finding a bit of time to continue developing my knowledge of the collections through the lens of my own particular scholarly interests -- watch for a new "object of the month" post in February on the intersection of antifeminism, the red scare, and religion during the 1920s.
|Anna and sister Maggie|
circa Spring 1995
In the meantime, long live librarians: the recognized and the unrecognized, the well-rewarded and the under- or unemployed. I am proud to count myself among your number.